Earlier this month an intoxicated driver caused a terrible head-on collision on Interstate 17 at Dixileta Drive in Phoenix. An alleged drunk motorist who was driving the wrong way in a Jeep northbound in the southbound lanes of Interstate 17 collided with another SUV while going about 65 mph.
The mother and daughter unfortunately sustained life-threatening injuries, including severe head trauma to the mother who is had to undergo surgery.
The intoxicated driver was also injured, but not as bad as the occupants of the other car. He is reportedly being charged with suspicion of aggravated assault and criminal damage. Police believe the driver was impaired at the time of the crash, that according to a DPS spokesperson. Police say the driver also has a prior record for DUI. The accident was significant enough to close several lanes of the interstate for 2 hours for a police investigation.
Drunk driving accidents are an ongoing problem in the Valley of the Sun and across the United States. Most years over 30% of drivers killed in accidents who are ages 25 through 34 are intoxicated. In the year 2007, nationwide one in seven people killed in DUI accidents were under the age of 21, therefore not even old enough to consume alcohol legally.
Injuries caused by intoxicated drivers can be especially upsetting to victims. This in part is because the accident was caused by an intentional act. Someone consumed too much alcohol and intentionally operated a vehicle, putting everyone on the roadway in jeopardy.
Like other parts of the country, motorists continue to drive while intoxicated even though there is a widespread public safety campaign in Arizona intended to reduce the amount of drunk drivers. This message is being spread by radio and television spots, and public service announcements in various forms.
Further, Arizona’s DUI laws are pretty tough. A first offense is a class I misdemeanor punishable by up to six months in jail and up to five years probation. A first-time extreme DUI offender (BAC of .15 or higher) has to serve a minimum 30 day jail sentence.
Even with this public relations campaign and Arizona’s tough DUI laws, the problem continues. Every year in Arizona approximately 15,000 people are injured and 300 are killed due to the negligent acts of drunk drivers.
Even more upsetting is the fact that, like in this accident, often the victims sustain more serious injuries than the drunk driver. This is sometimes due to the fact that the drunk driver may be traveling at a high rate of speed, slamming into a slower moving or stopped vehicle.
If you have been hurt in a crash, contact the Phoenix DUI injury lawyers at Abels & Annes, P.C. for a free, no obligation consultation. Our experienced attorneys are available to speak with you 24/7 at 602-819-5191. Remember, there is no attorney’s fee unless a financial recovery is made on your behalf.
Handling your personal injury claim without a lawyer? Phoenix Injury Lawyer Blog, February 7, 2013
Arizona auto accident – 1 dead, 2 injured, Phoenix Injury Lawyer Blog, January 31, 2013
2 hurt in Phoenix wrong-way Interstate 17 crash, By Yihyun Jeong, March 11, 2013, azcentral.com